What trends, developments or issues would you point to thus far in 2022 as being most significant, perhaps carrying implications for the rest of this year and beyond?
We’re seeing a lot of escapism. From design trends to the content in pieces, I think people really want some relief from all the heaviness. In design we can see this in the maximalist design trends, return of happy faces and psychedelic prints. It’s a little ‘70s mashed up with ‘90s. It’s upbeat and happy, although chaotic. I think it shows the optimism and resilience we want to have in a world that can feel a bit doomsday.
How have any societal issues--such as the pandemic, the Supreme court decision on abortion, calls for equity, inclusion, diversity, racial and social justice--impacted the way you do business, company policies and/or selection of projects/creative content?
Fortnight Collective has been thoughtful and intentional about how they grow with a commitment to a diverse workforce, the health and wellness of their employees and support for community DE&I initiatives. When the most recent Roe v Wade decision was announced, they had an instant response, and employees, especially remote workers, were made aware that anything they may need would be covered. Fortnight already had policies that offered privacy and leave for parternity, IVF, miscarriages, etc. I would expect nothing less.
Similarly Fortnight Collective is very committed to not just checking the boxes when it comes to diversity but being transparent and always wanting to do better. This means building stellar teams with a multitude of backgrounds and stories that meet and surpass representational goals reflected in our world and our clients..
What’s the biggest takeaway or lessons learned from work (please identify the project) you were involved in this year?
I was absolutely impressed with an internal video we made for Expedia Group for women and diversity. Expedia Group had a new platform to honor and uplift different groups, the first being women. Their commitment to making sure that it wasn’t just a shiny thing, and actually was made by women, for women was great. We used all women creatives, illustrators and honored female employees at Expedia.
What work (advertising, entertainment, documentary) -- your own or others--struck a responsive chord with you this year and why?
I’m a huge Marvel geek so I’m absolutely loving the MCU. The stories they’re telling, the way they’re linking it to culture and the way they are slowly building a world, movie by move, episode by episode is thrilling to me. I love how they are taking a stand on political issues and infusing racial and sexual diversity into their shows. I’m looking forward to what comes next.
While gazing into the crystal ball is a tricky proposition, we nonetheless ask you for any forecast you have relative to content creation and/or the creative and/or business climate for the second half of 2022 and beyond.
I think brands are going to have to be more transparent and take stands. Gen Z cares more and they understand the power of their dollars, and power of not spending their money. If brands want to earn their loyalty they can’t hide behind glitz and glam, they need to stand for something and have a point of view. At the same time I don’t think every ad can be so serious and I really hope a looming recession on top of everything else going on doesn’t completely wipe the fun out of advertising. We really need some escape right now.
Has the first half of 2022 caused you to redefine or fine tune the goals of your company, division, studio or network--and if so, in what way(s)?
If an agency isn’t fine tuning their goals and processes right now they should be. There’s a lot of uncertainty and we’re once again in a time where we need to spend resources smarter. At Fortnight we’ve always worked fast, and we pride ourselves of trimming away all the excess fat that sucks up clients’ resources. Right now we’re adjusting our processes to streamline how we work with a client to make sure that once we land on an idea we can move into production and optimize as much of their budget to make amazing work that will move the needle for them. Oftentimes this means creative problem solving for how to make a production work.